29 March 2006

Statehood Truths

Over at The Information Soldier, Aníbal Freytes quotes an Angus-Reid article about the (no) chances for Puerto Rico becoming a U.S. State. Though the tagline says "The idea is increasingly gaining ground both in the mainland and in the Caribbean island," the article implies U.S. indifference to Puerto Rico and delineates that statehood would mean pouring more cash into a leaky barrel. (Those are My words, not theirs.)

Aníbal comes to a self-described "sarcastic" summary of the article:

1) The U.S. doesn't give a damn about Us.
2) We want statehood because We're poor.
3) Welfare under statehood would be greater than it is now.
4) Half the U.S.'s population would be unwilling to change the first three points.

Point #1: The Jenius said it outright. That Aníbal can draw the same conclusion despite having diametrically different experiences than Mine is indication of how deep this Truth is.

Point #2: Again, a point The Jenius made previously. Remember, this isn't a race: what Aníbal is doing is reaching conclusions similar to Mine based on his own reading of the issue.

Point #3: A point I never discussed directly, but it follows from Point 2. In fact, the local statehood party has been trumpeting the slogan "Statehood is for the poor" (Estadidad es para los pobres) since the mid-1970s, a blatant attempt to whitewash the indignity of assimilation with greenbacks for the slovenly. (Yes, slovenly.) Statehood's idiocy is thus confined to a matter of "Show Me the Money!", a more rationally appropriate point for a movie about a sports agent than for a country's development.

Point #4: It goes beyond not wanting to change the previous three points, it's that there's no need to: whether it's autonomy, chooosing a status or arguing moot points, the U.S. has not, is not and cannot be forced to change its level of indifference to Us. In the matter of Our Future, We must choose for Ourselves and ignore the U.S. as it ignores Us.

But as local analyst Nestor Figueroa Lugo pointed out, the status issue does not impinge on Our daily lives, so it gets lost beneath the myriad issues We deal with every day. Nestor is right: Our status is political pantomime, Circus of The Fools. Now if only The Fools would be true mimes and shut the hell up about it...

The Jenius Has Spoken.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I live in Texas. I can tell you that the topic of statehood for Puerto Rico is a non-starter here. Many US citizens are watching the auto makers and manufacturers cut jobs, and they are watching numerous jobs ("blue collar" AND "white collar") depart for lower wage countries like India and China. They see more immigration (legal or not) as a serious threat to their personal job security.

In our current political climate, I can assure you that statehood for Puerto Rico is NOT going to happen. It would be political suicide for a politician to propose it. (Some politicians might not be that bright, but when it comes to protecting their own backsides, they are pretty adept at reading their constituents. And you don't need to read that many lips to figure out that they are saying "NO.")